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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Helena in Phillips County, Arkansas — The American South (West South Central)
 

The Mississippi River Defines Helena

 
 
The Mississippi River Defines Helena Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, January 17, 2012
1. The Mississippi River Defines Helena Marker
Inscription. The Mississippi River has for centuries been the backbone of life in Helena; fertilizing its soil, supporting its farms and businesses, connecting people and cultures. Helena, built at the base of Crowley’s Ridge, finds itself in a unique location along the river. Helena’s founders recognized that the “higher ground” near the ridge provided a safe place to build. At the same time, they could enjoy the town’s proximity to the water’s edge.

Anatomy of a River
A delta is a triangle-shaped area of flat land formed by deposition of sediment of the mouth of the river.

How do we define the “Delta” in Helena?
The “Delta” region of eastern Arkansas, eastern Louisiana and western Mississippi is not a true river delta, but is the current or past floodplain of the Mississippi River. The true delta of the Mississippi River is south of New Orleans, where the river meets the Gulf of Mexico. Tributaries and streams meander over the landscape to feed the Mississippi River. The soils of the Delta re rich because of the sediments deposited by the rivers and streams as they make their way down to the Gulf of Mexico

Boosting our economy
Island waterways have become a vital part of America’s economy. Each year, 624 million tons of cargo make
The Mississippi River Defines Helena Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, January 17, 2012
2. The Mississippi River Defines Helena Marker
their way along the country’s “marine highways.” Even more important the nation’s navigable rivers provide great energy savings.

Barges can move one ton of cargo 576 miles with a single gallon of fuel.
A railcar can move the same ton of cargo 425 miles.
A truck can carry it a mere 155 miles

American White Pelican

A vital habitat
The Mississippi River is home to hundreds of species of birds, fish, plants and other wildlife. In addition to the river itself, wetlands and forests along the river’s banks provide important wildlife habitat. The remaining floodplain of the river-the rich collection of habitats nourished by seasonal overflows-is 10 percent of its size before the erection of modern levees.

Some fascinating river facts
The Mississippi River begins at Lake Itasca in Minnesota, and ends at the Gulf of Mexico. Along the way it flows 2,552 miles When you combine the Mississippi with its longest tributary the Missouri River, the combined length is 3,870 miles, making it the world’s forth-longest river system. The river is the dominant watershed in North America, draining 41 percent of the contiguous United States. At its source, the Mississippi River is less than three feet deep. By contrast, it is 200 feet deep in New Orleans.

The Mississippi River is only
The Mississippi River Defines Helena Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, January 17, 2012
3. The Mississippi River Defines Helena Marker
20 to 30 feet wide at its source in Lake Itasca, Minnesota

Did you Know?
The name “Mississippi” comes from the Algonquin language and means “Father of Waters.”
 
Location. 34° 31.467′ N, 90° 35.06′ W. Marker is in Helena, Arkansas, in Phillips County. Marker is on Helena River Park. Touch for map. Marker is located on the boardwalk in Helena River Park. Marker is in this post office area: Helena AR 72342, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Explore our Top Outdoor Destinations (here, next to this marker); River Birds (here, next to this marker); Those who have come before (here, next to this marker); The River Connects communities (here, next to this marker); The Helena Bridge (here, next to this marker); Does the River ever flood? (here, next to this marker); The Blues Trail: Mississippi to Helena (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); KFFA 1360 Helena (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Helena.
 
Also see . . .  Mississippi River and the Great Outdoors. Helena is the only downtown on the Mississippi River for the 300 miles between Memphis and Vicksburg, making it the perfect launching point for any river adventure. The Mississippi River is home to some of the biggest catfish in the country and Helena River Park’s 60 foot wide boat ramp (one of the largest public ramps on the lower Mississippi) is the perfect access point for a fishing trip. The largest catfish caught in Helena weighed in at 116 pounds, and it’s not uncommon for first time fisherman to catch 15 to 30 pounders. Fishing is also popular in many of the area’s lakes and on the White River, located to the south and west of the county. (Submitted on September 1, 2017, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa.) 
 
Categories. AnimalsIndustry & CommerceWaterways & Vessels
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 3, 2017. This page originally submitted on September 1, 2017, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. This page has been viewed 62 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on September 1, 2017, by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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